Plant growth and productivity are greatly affected by environmental stresses such as drought, high salinity, and low temperature. Expression of a variety of genes is induced by these stresses in various plants. The products of these genes function not only in stress tolerance but also in stress response. In the signal transduction network from perception of stress signals to stress-responsive gene expression, various transcription factors and cis-acting elements in the stress-responsive promoters function for plant adaptation to environmental stresses. Recent progress has been made in analyzing the complex cascades of gene expression in drought and cold stress responses, especially in identifying specificity and cross talk in stress signaling. In this review article, we highlight transcriptional regulation of gene expression in response to drought and cold stresses, with particular emphasis on the role of transcription factors and cis-acting elements in stress-inducible promoters.